Updates: Recent Science Fiction Acquisitions XXXIII (Delany + Wyndham + Sturgeon + Knight + Ellison)
July 14, 2012 § 13 Comments
My last batch of the summer from Austin, TX — as always a nice haul. Unfortunately, I’m back home in a rather lackluster state for acquiring sci-fi. Henceforth, amazon/abebooks it shall be!
Still haven’t tackled a Sturgeon collection yet — now I have three unread ones sitting in my to read stack. I also added Delany’s first published novel, The Jewels of Aptor (1962), to my collection. And some Ellison stories… And three short novels (in one collection) by Damon Knight of whom I have a rather dubious opinion (see Beyond the Barrier).
Most importantly, another Wyndham novel (still haven’t read The Day of the Triffids which I’ve had for years and years and years).
1. A Way Home, Theodore Sturgeon (1956)
(Mel Hunter’s cover for the 1956 edition)
From the back cover of a different edition: “A college professor eavesdrops on two coeds having a cat-fight over a man — and finds a way to conquer the world? Some visitors from space show up just in time to solve a tricky love triangle involving two frantic females and one dumbfounded man? The man in the first flying saucers turns out to be related to the boy next door?”
2. Approaching Oblivion, Harlan Ellison (1974)
(Leo Dillon and Diane Dillon’s cover for the 1974 edition)
From the inside flap of a different edition: “Kiss of Fire — a man can learn to program the deaths of worlds yet never see the handwriting on the stars… Silent in Gehanna — the last student militant in a nation of fortresslike universities finds, to his dismal, that someone was out there listening… Erotophobia — or, how to meet the nightmare challenge of being the best-loved person on Earth… One life, Furnished in Early Poverty — what does happen when you go home again, and again…? Hindsight: 480 seconds — the last man on Earth stood alone in his world…”
3. Out of the Deeps, John Wyndham (1953)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1953 edition)
From the inside flap of a different edition: “First there were the fiery red valls, plundging down from the sky into the sea. Then ships began to disappear — mysteriously. A diver is sent down in a bathysphere reports an indistinct shape hovering near… and then the monster attacks. When the cable is pulled up, the end is not broken or frayer through but fused! Soon the creatures are seen advancing upon the beack — loathsome, slimy, and dangerous beyond all imagining. Now the world is caught in the grip of a chilling horror as the creatures from the deep wage war on all of mankind…”
4. A Pluribus Unicorn, Theodore Sturgeon (1953)
(Richard Powers’ cover for the 1956 edition)
Later edition: No inside flap or back cover blurb about the contents.
5. Three Novels (Rule Golden, Natural State, The Dying Man), Damon Knight (1967)
(Richard Power’s cover for the 1969 edition)
From the back cover: “Rule Golden: Be done by as ye do. Damon Knight takes the deceptively simple device of inverting the Golden Rule in the hands of an alien, and puts it to work. The result is a fable carried out with relentless logic. Natural state: The order of a wildly paradoxical society of 2064 seems threatened by the Muckfeet, the people who live outside the major cities. The world’s largest city, New York, enlists the aid of a promising young actor… The Dying Man: In a century many times ahead of ours, man has discovered the secret of immortality, and death is thought to be non-existent, But when the frustrated student Dio discovers he is mortal and death is approaching, he encounters, for the first time in his life, supreme happiness.”
6. The Jewels of Aptor, Samuel R. Delany (1962)
(Jeff Jones’ cover for the 1968 edition)
From the back cover of a different edition: “A poet, a thief and bear-like giant follow a triple goddess in search of gems of unimaginable power, to a ruined land ruled by monsters.”